CBS Evening News for Sunday, Apr 19, 1981
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(Studio) Estimated number of underground coal mine fires smoldering in United States and various sources of fires reported.
REPORTER: Morton Dean
(Centralia, Pennsylvania) Danger posed by underground fire here examined; background to town's plight recalled. [Resident Carrie WOLFGANG - notes fear among residents.] John Coddington's experiences and financial loss from situation outlined. [US Ofc. of Surface Mining spokesperson Robert BIGGIE - criticizes agencies involved.] Estimated number of families possibly having to be moved and residents' protest over lack of government action discussed. [Representative James NELLIGAN - thinks those in immediate danger will be dealt with first.] [Mary GASPERETTI - argues with Nelligan.] [Asthma victim Rachael LAMB - notes impact on her health.] Town meeting tomorrow re: possible relocation mentioned. [Resident David LAMB - comments on divisiveness among residents now due to crisis.] [Pennsylvania emergency management agency director Lieutenant General DeWitt SMITH - considers other options, include excavation.] Estimated cost of putting fire out and amount spent over decades in piecemeal attempts cited; concern of some citizens over possibility that town's mineral rights to large vein of anthracite coal may be influencing factor in relocating. [LAMB - thinks there's a conspiracy to get the coal.] Length of time involved in putting fire out mentioned.
REPORTER: Steve Young